Exergen Global’s IRt/c-HB infrared thermocouple plus series is a family of non-contact sensors that help ensure accurate temperature measurement and sterility in medical equipment including rapid infusion pump systems and blood warming systems. The units employ a patented heat balance technique, heralded as the industry’s only non-invasive method capable of measuring fluid temperature through metal or plastic, ensuring sterility and patient safety. Non-invasive thermal management techniques avoid fluid contamination that would jeopardize patient safety, making them an ideal way to assess temperature, particularly in trauma situations.
Exergen’s heat balance method measures fluid temperature inside of devices by measuring both the tubing surface and ambient temperature, then calculating the internal temperature necessary to maintain heat balance. A clip head provides a reproducible mounting location for the sensor and can be quickly removed from used tubing and attached to new tubing. Other features include:
• Sterility/re-usability/price: invasive contact sensors can be used one time only. These disposable sensors must be sterile and are expensive. Exergen’s sensors can be re-used, creating a big cost saving.
• Accuracy: non-contact sensing is more accurate in all applications when compared to contact sensing. Contact sensors need to acquire the temperature of the object they are measuring, which means that the thermal mass of the contact sensor (even if it is very small) will affect the reading.
• Speed: contact sensors are slower than non-contact sensors. This especially holds true when contact sensors are used on the outside of tubing, as the tubing wall itself slows the net response time.
• Ease of use: contact sensors need to be placed in or on the target, which can be a tedious job to perform correctly, especially when measuring the temperature of a fluid inside a disposable component (tubing, cartridge). Exergen’s solution includes a reproducible mounting system that is easier to place and very easy to install.
• Unobstructed blood flow: The act of placing a contact probe in the blood stream disrupts uniform blood flow and risks triggering reactions that may damage blood cells. With non-contact sensors, there’s no contact with the blood and no disruption of the blood flow.
• Provide readings -- up to 25ms
• Self-powered and intrinsically safe, no service or calibration needed
• Repeatability error of 0.01°C (0.02°F)
• Interchangeability error of +-1%